As reported in the Red & Black, the Georgia gymnastics program recently gained a new head coach.
Courtney Kupets Carter, who competed while at Georgia from 2006-2009, was named the team’s eighth head coach last Tuesday May 9, following the firing of former head coach Danna Durante.
"I feel like it's a very special opportunity, and I am so thankful and grateful for this chance to show the passion that I had while I was a gymnast at Georgia, but now I get to have that passion as a head coach," Kupets Carter said at her introductory press conference last week. "I cannot wait to instill that into the current and future Gymdogs."
Kupets Carter’s return is highly anticipated as she was one of the best collegiate gymnasts ever. In 2006, she won individual titles in bars, beam and all-around.
Although an injury caused her to miss the 2008 NCAA Championships, she still managed to finish her career with nine individual national titles, which is a record that still stands.
Kupets Carter announced her hiring of new volunteer coach Suzanne Yoculan Leebern, who won 10 national championships as UGA's head coach from 1984-2009.
"I am so thankful that she would come back and take the time and invest back in the program that she started," Kupets Carter said. "It's going to be a monumental year, not only for the program, but for the athletes who get to experience little bits of what I got to experience out of Suzanne.”
While still somewhat successful, Georgia's program has declined since Yoculan's retirement. The last time the program won a national title was during Kupets Carter's senior season in 2009, which was Yoculan's last season as head coach.
Under Durante, the Bulldogs didn’t finish higher than fifth at NCAA Super Six. Now, Kupets Carter will try to change that even though this is her first time being a college head coach.
"Georgia gymnastics will win championships again," Kupets Carter said.
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